Best of the Blogs, 3 May 2011

By on 3 May, 2011
Osha Gray Davidson’s Forbes blog has a piece on the various attempts at trying to locate Osama Bin Laden’s now infamous Abbottabad, Pakistan compound, where the Al Qaeda founder was assassinated. Spoiler alert: it finishes with the official location, and diagrams of the compound.
If you want the freshest imagery, however, G Earth Blog has some images that were captured only yesterday. Now that’s a speedy turnaround.
Vector One has a post asking the question whether we have spatial data to back up the assertion that the earth is constantly changing physically and biologically. It’s an interesting round-up of some of the real-time spatial monitoring services currently available, and questions what’s next.
Tom Tom is the latest company (Hello Apple! Hello Google!) to receive flack from their customers regarding their logging of location data. This time, however, it’s not that Tom Tom didn’t seek consent before acquiring and releasing this data (they did), it’s that the data was used by Dutch police to determine the best areas to place speed traps, making Tom Tom's heavy-footed customers rather unhappy.
If you aren’t the type to worry about big brother’s watchful eye and you own an iPhone, you may be interested in a post over at Kel’s Cartography that highlights a project that is asking people to donate those notorious iPhone location logs, to compile an open database of wi-fi acces points and network towers, to better get an idea of how these networks are distributed across the world.
Best Syndication News has a little piece outlining a new US-based mapping site that highlights areas in the US that are considered “food deserts”, ie those areas that don’t have access to stores selling fresh fruit or vegetables.
And, finally, in one of the ever-popular “what was it like in olden-times?” mapping posts, The Map Room points us to a comparison of 16th-Century maps vs 21st-century satellite imagery of some of the world’s cities. A very interesting project, but not without caveats: the 16th-century maps aren’t georeferenced, but it’s an interesting comparison nonetheless.

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